“My daily focus shifted from reviewing business performance to actively participating in the business, adding value and influencing those in the business.”
- Name: Zuber
- Job Title: Financial Controller for Sky Wholesale
- Location: I’m mostly based on the Osterley campus, but will occasionally work from the Sky office in London Victoria.
- How long have you been at Sky? I joined Sky 3 years ago, having qualified at PWC.
- How did you get to where you are now? I joined Sky from PWC Audit department (West London) immediately after qualifying. When I joined I realised that I had quite a few transferrable skills including a strong technical background which helped give me the confidence to make decisions. Also, during my time in Audit I was well practiced in managing numerous stakeholders and working to deadlines. Always useful in a large fast paced business like Sky.
- What was the biggest change in moving from practice into an industry role? It’s a change of mind-set really, my daily focus shifted from reviewing business performance to actively participating in the business, adding value and influencing those in the business. At Sky you’ll deal a lot with teams outside of Finance and you soon recognise that you have a big part to play in shaping the performance of the business in both a financial and operational way.
- What’s been the key to your success? Naturally I’m quite a curious person which has really helped. I’ll always take an interest in the ‘what’ and ‘why’, which I feel builds greater commercial awareness making me better at my job. Attention to detail and delivering good quality outputs right the first time is also key in building trust with the business quickly, something my Audit background also helped with. Both of these skills have definitely helped me quickly progress from Analyst to Financial controller within 3 years – something I’m really proud of!
- What’s the most enjoyable thing about working in Finance? Gaining a really broad experience by working in some really interesting areas like Product Design and Development, Logistics and Supply Chain and more recently on some of our most exciting European projects! We have a rotation scheme which ensures that throughout your time you’ll work across a myriad of different businesses with a host of different stakeholders (innovative tech guys, hardened supply chain negotiators and some of the brightest strategic thinkers) meaning you’re always developing, something I love about Sky.
- Finally, what is your favourite show on Sky? I’m really into the dramas on Sky Atlantic, particularly True Detective. The first series was great and I’m about to watch the second. I also spend a lot of time watching Sky Sports, I’m a big Arsenal fan and like watching Federer in the tennis!
“There are so many ways that Sky reaches out to help young people and give them ideas about their futures.”
Hi. My name’s Ben, I’m 18 years old and use a wheelchair. As a kid my ambition was always to join the army but now had to rethink all my career plans.
I applied for work experience at Sky through an organisation called - Whizz-Kidz. They gave me the support to take part in work placement opportunities that I never dreamed I’d be able to get involved with.
During my week’s work experience at Sky, we had amazing workshops - one of the best was about CV writing. I learnt how important it’s to tweak your CV to show the kind of skillset needed in the job you are aiming for. We also got the chance to spend time with different departments, my favourite bit was probably working with the creative team who design billboards. It was really interesting to see just how much work and attention goes into the tiniest detail. I also had the chance to be part of the Sky Academy Roadshow and help out at a presentation about opportunities for young people I found that there are so many ways Sky reaches out to help young people and give them ideas about their futures.
Throughout the week it always felt as if I was doing real work! I had the chance to contribute and knew what I did was going to be used after I left. For example, I’m really proud that one of my ideas will be used for a recruitment campaign. –What did I suggest? Well, Sky use real employees in their career adverts, but usually they take off their staff lanyards for these photos. I suggested that they should keep them on as it shows they work for Sky. The team thought I made a really good point and the idea is now going be taken on board. As a result of this experience I’d like to work in the creative side of marketing now.
Overall, Sky is an amazing place to work. The people are great and everyone talked to me, making me feel welcome throughout my week here!
Written by Ben Parsons Work Experience June 2015
“Deal with every call as if it is the first call of the day…”
- Name: Jose
- Job title: Customer Service Advisor
- What area of Sky do you work in? I work in Billing at our Sheffield Contact Centre.
- How did you get to where you are now? I kept striving to reach targets given to me and constantly looked for ways to improve. In this job listening to our customers’ needs and striving for a resolution for any of their concerns is really important.
- Describe a typical day… On a daily basis my tasks would include, explaining bills to our customers, letting them know about any recent price changes , what they mean and if there are any great offers available for them. I also deal with customer concerns, for example differences in the price of the package now, to what the price was when discussed at the point of sale. I always try to make sure our customers are on the package that suits their needs.
- What do you specialise in and work with on a daily basis? I would say resolving our customers’ issues the best and quickest way possible. Adding value on all calls is also important; from upgrading their packages, to letting them know about the online and interactive services available to help manage their own account.
- Describe your work/life balance at Sky? My work/life balance here is really good. I work part-time mornings, so I can give 100% to my role. Then in the afternoons I have time for my family.
- What’s the most enjoyable thing about your job? I enjoy the satisfaction of dealing with a difficult enquiry, taking ownership of it and seeing it through to a result that is both good for the customer and for us.
- What would be your advice to someone who’d want to do what you’re doing? Deal with every call as if it is the first call of the day, even if some of the previous calls were challenging. Starting your call in a friendly and upbeat manner, gives the customer a great impression from the start, which will lead to a better conversation.
- An interesting fact/something no one else knows about you? When I was 11 I earned my pocket money working on my parent’s fruit & veg stall. I used to shout deals to the people like the town crier!
“We’re an energetic and happy team and I’m very proud to be part of it.”
- Name: Ellie
- Job title: Trials Manager
- What area of Sky do you work in? Product Design & Development
- How did you get to where you are now? I started here as a PA in 2006. I then moved to the Trials Team as a Junior Trial Co-ordinator. I now run the Product Trials section of the Trials@Sky team.
- Describe a typical day… Every day is different in our team. We currently have around 25 staff trials running at the same time so our days are filled with trial strategies, emails, defects and surveys!
- What do you specialise in and work with on a daily basis? My team specialise in the HD box and broadband trials. Our desks are covered in all sorts of hardware which means our area looks a bit messy most of the time!
- Describe your work/life balance at Sky? I have a great work/life balance and work in a very child friendly team. I juggle a 5 day full time working week with a 2 year old but manage it.
- What’s the most enjoyable thing about your job? My colleagues, we’re an energetic and happy team and I’m very proud to be part of it.
- What would be your advice to someone who’d want to do what you’re doing? Don’t join this type of department if you like routine and tidiness. Our plans and projects constantly change but being part of launching a new exciting product to Sky’s customers is very rewarding.
- An interesting fact/something no one else knows about you? I’m a Beaver Scout Leader at a local group in Osterley.
“The best thing about my job would be the unknown”
- Name: Jordan
- Job title: Store Manager
- What area of Sky do you work in? Retail, Barnsley, East Midlands
- How did you get to where you are now? Well I started 4 years ago as a Sales Advisor. I put in a lot of effort travelling around different stores, working in different areas: from big busy shopping centres, to very small towns. This was to learn how other Advisors sell, and how the role changes massively depending on where you're working. Doing this gave me the tools and skills needed to adapt and deliver -wherever I was working. Over my four years I was promoted from an Advisor to a small Store Manager. As I continued to deliver, I was eventually promoted to manage a grade A store in Meadowhall - one of the busiest shopping centres in the country! This just goes to show if you put the effort in, how far and fast you can grow in this huge company.
- Describe a typical day… I'd say I'm the face of Sky but not literally! But it's me and the staff who do this job that bring products to life. We’ve got a real understanding of our products and take pride in delivering a great service. Customers always come first and I enjoy helping individuals or families find the right product for them.
- What’s the best thing about working here? 1) The diversity of the company. It doesn't matter what you look like, what religion or sexual orientation you have. Everyone is equal and your opinion is valid. 2) Free Sky- who doesn't love having a free Sky package. 3) Amazing benefits. I've had discounts on iPads, TVs, Surface Pro tablets and countless gifts like: Dre. Beats, George Forman grill, day trips out, gift vouchers etc…
- What’s the most enjoyable thing about your job? The best thing about my job would be the unknown. You never know what’s going to happen, you could be working on sales, dealing with complaints or helping to solve technical questions. Whatever the day brings, we always deliver our very best to show we don’t just sell but are here to help with much more. Like myself, the company doesn't stand still - it's constantly developing for the better.
- If Sky came to you and asked you to make a programme, what would it be? Who would be in it? If I had to make a TV show, it would be about the running of a successful shopping centre (similar humour to the Trollied boxset). James Cordon would have to be a security guard, Jimmy Carr as centre manager, and of course me as the Sky man.
- An interesting fact/something no one else knows about you? I attended wrestling school for 2 years... I challenged The Rock but am still waiting for a reply …
- If you could be any Sky TV Character, which would it be and why? It's not really a character but I'd like to be Jeff Stelling "would you believe it"
“Don’t be afraid to explore opportunities”
I have been working at Sky for nine years now (hard to believe, I know, as I look so young) and in that time I have had a number of jobs which have led me to where I am today.
I started as a fresh-faced student working part-time as an Advisor to earn some extra pennies to pay for my beers (ahem… I mean books). I loved the products, the culture and the people here so, when I graduated from University, I started a secondment in the Finance team. From there I joined the Home Service & Supply graduate programme, and it was there that I found my passion for delivering change. That brought me to my current role as a Senior Business Analyst in Change, Quality and Billing.
My job is to work with different areas of the business to understand exactly what is required to deliver a specific project successfully.
Once we know that. I work with our delivery teams to develop and implement the change into the relevant areas of the business. It’s a really exciting role which has given me the opportunity to work on a number of exciting things, such as the launch of the Family pack, Sky Sports 5 and, most recently, the new Sky Fibre package. To top all of that off, I am now fortunate enough to be involved in the launch of Sky’s mobile phone product, which is pretty exciting!
Working in different business areas and joining projects I have no expertise in has really helped me to develop my skills both in change management and increase my business knowledge, which I am always able to use to my advantage in my next project.
My advice to anyone looking to progress their career in or outside of Sky would be, don’t be afraid to explore opportunities with your line manager or your network of contacts. Get involved in projects or initiatives within your current role (when you can) and build your knowledge of different business areas. This type of experience becomes invaluable when taking the next step in your career.
"What an amazing lady - it was an honour to recognise Issy, who’s seen and played an incredible role in the progress of our business."
Tom Scott, Customer Service Director surprised Issy presenting her with her Long Service award and some celebratory flowers at her office in Livingston.
Tom, "What an amazing lady - it was an honour to recognise Issy who’s worked at Sky for so long and who’s seen and played an incredible role in the progress of our business."
Isobel has seen more of Sky than most
Since joining Sky in 1990, Isobel has had a range of roles within our Customer Service Group and seen huge changes in scale and technology as we've grown to serve our millions of customers’ year on year.
- Isobel started Sky in 1990 with Telemarketing
- In 1999 she moved into Customer Service
- By July 2000 she became a Call Traffic Controller
- In 2007 she moved onto be a Real Time Controller
- After that in July 2010, Isobel became an Ops Controller
- And currently, she has been a Platform Management Administrator since November 2010
Even after 25 years Issy is always keen to get involved in new projects and loves singing with the Sky Choir.
"Sky has transformed me from a nervous student into an extremely motivated, passionate and successful member of our team.”
Holly Bentley is a student at the University of Hertfordshire studying Business and Marketing and, for 14 months, she has been part of Sky in Online Sales and Marketing on our placement programme. She shares her story as she prepares to return to her final year at university next week:
"Sky has transformed me from a nervous student into an extremely motivated, passionate and successful member of our team.
I have never worked anywhere where everybody is so passionate about their role, and really believe in Sky’s values of doing the right thing and creating change. When I joined Sky, I was nervous about entering an environment where I would have a limited amount of responsibility. But it has proven to be the complete opposite!
I feel I have had many achievements within my role, including setting many new sales records in the online mobile ‘Shop’. On my second induction day in August last year I, along with the other graduate and placement starters, had a Q&A with Jeremy as part of our centralised induction. I asked whether Sky was considering entering the mobile network market. At the time, it was something we weren’t going to jump into quite yet, but we were watching closely.One of the biggest things I love about Sky is how quickly we change, grow and excel as a business and, months later, we were brought up to speed with a project to bring Sky Mobile to market.I am extremely grateful for the amount of time Sky has invested in me through training, development and support from my team and agencies. I received regular support from my peers, and am made to feel like a valued member of the team - and never like a temporary colleague.I will take the Believe in Better attitude back to university for my final year, and work hard towards attaining my degree and coming back to Sky following my exams."
“What does Sky mean to you?” - “A place to thrive” had been my answer
There was something slightly unnerving about walking into the conference room at Edinburgh’s Royal College of Surgeons and being met by a 10ft high image of me. Even though I’d posed for the photo and submitted my answer to the question, “What does Sky mean to you?” it was still a bit of surprise!
“A place to thrive” had been my answer. And this year’s Scottish Sky Finance conference certainly reaffirmed my view.
This year’s theme was “Brand” and looked at ways to answer “why fit in when you were born to stand out?”
A series of speakers from both inside and outside the business presented a fast paced and engaging series of stimulating insights, kicking off with a finance update.
Lucy Ratcliffe of IDology shared key lessons on developing a personal brand urging us to Believe it, Behave it and Become it, whilst Simon Buglione, Sky’s Executive Creative Director, led us through the changing faces of the Sky brand.
A thought provoking team challenge created a competitive edge to the afternoon with the finalists presenting their pitches to the judges, ‘Sky’s Silver Surfer’s’ were chosen as the winning team and went home happy with their prize - Samsung tablets.
The afternoon finished on an inspiring note courtesy of Oli Norman, CEO of Itison, Scotland’s most popular daily deals website. There wasn’t a dull moment and supporting his overriding message, “Regret what you do, not what you don’t”. A great takeaway for all.
Written by Gillian - Senior Finance Auditor
"Sky makes me proud to be part of a company that offers such good opportunities..."
- “Sky makes me proud to be part of a company that offers such good opportunities – not just for their staff, but for the community also” - George
- “The support at Sky is fantastic, even one year on there is always someone on hand to help” – Claire
- “Thanks to the Apprenticeship scheme I have the time to develop and better myself” – Matt
- “The training has given me more confidence in speaking to people” – Jamie
- “Participating in ‘Sky Sports Living for Sports’ and working with young people was a great experience” – Emma
- “I’m now a “buddy” for new Apprentices and it’s really interesting to see people being exactly where I was a year ago.” –Alex
- “The incentives are amazing, recently we had the chance to win “His&Her” bikes for Sales through service” – Scott
- “I now have a recognised NVQ in Customer Service and my apprenticeship developed into a full time career – I’ve been here for 8 years now!” – Kal
- “It’s a fantastic platform for you to begin your career with Sky and I would recommend it to anyone” – Stuart
- “We work here – that’s us in the photo!”
To find out more about the opportunities that exist at Sky in Newcastle click here: www.bit.ly/1iYB49L